Nothing like a tall, cool glass of game to wash the week out of your system and get you ready for the weekend. Dubloon could easily keep you busy until Monday morning rolls around, but Surphasm is unique enough to deserve your attention. Rein is a great diversion when you're ready for an adventure that won't take you a week to complete.
Dubloon (Windows, 29.7MB, free) - Pirates! Battles! Role playing! Dubloon's got all that. This classic-style RPG from Banov, creator of Assassin Blue, features an interesting storyline, battles that incorporate active elements, and fun dialogue and puzzles all wrapped in a surprisingly lengthy package. The game manages to avoid a few RPG banalities while playfully incorporating others, and the mixture of combat and loot gathering is quite well done.
Surphasm (Windows, 4MB, free) - An extraordinary piece of exploration/puzzle gaming that will easily be overlooked for its painfully simple presentation and awkward control scheme. You play a freshly-hatched... thingie... that's trying to make it to the surface. Other eggs have been placed down here as well, and only the strongest and most intelligent can make it to the energy-rich land above. Swim around and solve some robust puzzles to follow the vine that climbs upwards. You'll even engage in a bit of combat along the way. There are 14 endings to find, and once you start playing the game, you'll want to see them all.
Rein (Windows, 14MB, free) - A short adventure game made in just a few weeks by Darius Poyer. Your secret bioengineering project is almost complete, but the lab seems to be collapsing all around you. Oops. Your research partner refuses to leave, though, and after an unfortunate incident, you'll be left to find a way out. Rein is unusual for an adventure game in that you can die (and die quickly), so don't dawdle and be prepared to replay small chunks of the game from time to time.
Note: All games have been confirmed to run under Windows Vista and are virus-free. Mac users should try Boot Camp, Parallels, or CrossOver Games to play Windows titles, Linux users can use Wine. If you know of a great game we should feature, use the Submit link above to send it in!